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(11 September 2018) - Twenty years of applying a LEADER-type approach in Cape Verde has significantly reduced poverty in this deprived country and stemmed the rural exodus, while strengthening democracy and community-led local development.

Cape Verde
© Samuel Thirion

Since 2000, a completely new national programme to combat poverty in rural areas has adopted all the principles of LEADER: local partnership, bottom-up approach, a global grant on the basis of a concerted territorial strategy, decentralisation of financing decisions, etc.

The LEADER-type experience in Cape Verde opens up interesting prospects in terms of sustainable development and new forms of governance in the face of the challenges of the modern world: combating poverty, fixing populations, a more efficient use of resources, protection and transmission of common goods, etc. It also makes it possible to achieve other essential objectives such as solidarity, democracy and citizen participation.

The co-founder and director of the INDE NGO, and the designer of the SPIRAL participatory approach at the Council of Europe, Samuel Thirion has accompanied the process in Cape Verde described in this article since its inception.

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